Whipped Cream is pleased to welcome Luxie Ryder, whose latest book Midnight Rodeo is available from Siren Publishing.
I asked Luxie how she distinguished between erotica, erotic romance, and pornography.
"I think the main difference between erotica, erotic romance and pornography is the reason you are describing the sex between the characters," she replied. "I believe that erotica just describes the desire or act as an art form and doesn't focus on emotion. Erotic romance involves describing the intensity of the sex between the participants to show the building emotional connection and chemistry between them. Pornography is purely meant to titillate the reader and is not interested in the characters."
She recently had an online disagreement with a reader of a middle-class English newspaper about this subject. The reader suggested that she seriously doubted women were buying erotic fiction and that by giving it a title such as "erotic romance," writers were trying to elevate it above what it actually was—porn. "Her final argument," Luxie told me, "was that if this type of fiction was really selling in the numbers I was suggesting, then it was only due to MEN, buying it for their wives in order to get them to 'dip a toe into the porn pool.' My reply to her was that if she genuinely believed what she had just said, then she no longer recognized the world she lived in."
Luxie told me that when she's reading erotic romance, she likes scenes to be realistic. "A female character having multiple orgasms with little or no stimulation just makes me switch off," she said. "I love the idea of such an intense relationship existing between the characters that they just have to be together. The slow build of sexual tension is my favorite part and I enjoy writing about it."
She told me she can write purely pornographic scenes, but she doesn't enjoy doing it. "I like to have romance in my stories," she explained. "I need to know the characters in order to want to make the effort of writing the scenes (they aren't easy you know!). I have no moral objection to porn, it's just not something I would enjoy writing."
One of the short stories she's recently read really stuck in her mind. It was titled "The Dent." Although the author of it has no interest in being published, Luxie told me, "I think the author was very gifted."
Her own life serves as research for most of her books—ideas, images, music, or people who inspired a reaction. "I have also been blessed (challenged?) to have had a very complex life," she explained. "Parental issues as well as personal experiences and tragedies (such as the murder of a gay friend) mean I have experienced every emotion out there. It is a blessing in a way that I have lived such a life. I can empathize with others and find that I look deeper to understand the motivation behind their actions. On the plus side, it also means that I find sexual interactions between people fascinating and I love weaving that knowledge into my stories."
Luxie did tell me that her mum isn't allowed to read her stories. "She is a bit old fashioned and I know she would be looking at me funny!" Luxie said. However, a couple of her six sisters have helped her with proofreading.
I asked Luxie to tell us about her most embarrassing moment. "Too many to count," she told me. "Getting home and finding that my pencil skirt had split right up to the waistband sometime on my journey ranks right up there with the best of them. I had no idea how long my knickers had been on show. I just convinced myself it wasn't THAT bad!"
When she's not writing, she told me that she can be found redecorating her house when it begins to bore her or spending time with their German shepherd puppy. "He has just turned a year old and is a big, soft thing," she said. "He weighs in at almost 100 pounds now so it's not easy to ignore him."
I also wanted to know what one food was she absolutely could not bring herself to eat.
"Lobster. I think the way they are captured and cooked is appalling. Did you know that lobsters mate for life? I remember I told a lobster loving friend this one time and she was so upset she actually stopped eating it - until her father reminded her that, if they mate for life, they were probably caught together!" she explained. "I don't mind others eating it but I just can't bring myself to."
If Luxie was going to entertain a character for the evening, her first choice would be Wade, from Mama's Charm. "He is a big, strong, dark, sexy redneck and my ideal evening would be the same as the one I wrote for him and Martine - supper, samba and sex!" she said. "Reb and Cody - the two male leads from Midnight Rodeo wouldn't leave much time for anything but them if Talia's experience is anything to go by. She's got her hands full - lucky girl!"
Finally, I asked Luxie what advice she would give to authors wanting to write erotica.
"Just do it," she said. "Write about what you like to begin with. Use an alias if you are uncomfortable and don't want people to relate the words/actions with you personally." You can keep up with Luxie on her website, http://www.luxieryder.com.